Rosoboronexport signed the contract with Damascus at the beginning of the year, Russia's online daily Kommersant reported Tuesday.
Syria is receiving planes from the reserve of the Russian Air Force that are being modified to the purchaser's specifications because production of the MiG-31 was halted in 1994.
“Export orders are starting to come in for the MiG-31. We are offering the MiG-31E on a trade-in basis for countries that have the MiG-25 interceptor,” deputy general director of the state MiG Russian Aviation Construction Corp. Vladimir Vypryazhkin told Kommersant on Monday.
Libya and Syria are the only countries that have MiG-25 fighter-interceptor and recognizance aircraft at present. India recently retired its MiG-25s.
MiG-31E fighter-interceptors are being sold abroad for the first time and are similar in their technical specifications to the MiG-35 model Russia is now offering India.
The total value of the contract for the MiG-31 and MiG-29M/M2 aircraft is estimated at $1 billion.
Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad was in Moscow last December for negotiations with his Russian counterpart, during which he expressed willingness to replace the country's aging MiG-25 planes with the version of MiG-29 or MiG-31.
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